Haying Hijinx

One would suppose that after dispersing (selling) almost all of our herd that this blogger would have all sorts of free-time to be posting stories and pictures and filling this blog daily! I’m here to tell you – finally here – that it just doesn’t happen that way.

Regardless, I’m still at it…the blog still lives and my stories carry on.

Right now, hubby and I find ourselves blessed with probably our best and most productive hay crop ever! After the copious beautiful rains during most of this summer, we are now in the fields along with our helpful neighbours,  gathering this bounty. The irony of course is we don’t have all those cows to feed. Seems when we had “all those cows” we were constantly facing possible drought conditions and seeking out ways and means to buy more feed. So, now….can it be….we are on the other side….we can actually SELL feed!!! It’s been a delight to be on the haying “crew” helping make this all happen.

We seem to have a gender-specific-duty thing going on too. Either it’s me or stepdaughter Shelby running the tractor and rake and the fellas are operating the balers. I had the unique experience the other day to drive her out to the field where the tractor and rake were waiting for her shift.  I call it “unique” because we had her daughter – our first grandbaby!!! – wedged (don’t report me to the safety people) into the back of the 3/4 ton truck and about to experience her very first Berg Adventure with her grandma.

20190821_143123442911462609588541.jpg

Wouldn’t you know it, I drove us right into a low-wet-spot and dug that old truck right into submission.

20190821_1428027544758336523684467.jpg

Get ready Baby Jill….when out at the ranch with Grandma Flicka…well, stuff just kinda happens!!!

I Took A Trip

I took myself on a trip this spring. I came away from this trip with the life-altering realization that I had made my life unnecessarily complicated and busy. My journey took me to a special world amongst some of the most amazing creatures on earth…grizzly bears. Just seven other guests, two crew members and I boarded two float planes from Prince Rupert into the exquisitely serene and incredibly beautiful Khutzeymateen Grizzly Bear Sanctuary…a land where grizzly bears are fiercely protected and where they can never, and I do mean never, be hunted… it’s the law!

I struggle to find the words to describe the experience of viewing and floating amongst these gracious creatures. I say gracious because they allow us to enter their environment and click away with our cameras yet they carry on in tranquility. They must feel that they are indeed protected and that we observant and excited humans are no threat to them. They continue to eat and roam and swim and simply carry on with their peaceful lives as they accomodate us mere mortals.

We all realized, at the end of our time in the Khutzeymateen, that we were privileged to share this time with these beautiful bears and with each other. It’s a really special thing that goes on when you live only on the water (either the sailboat/ketch or Zodiac raft) with 9 strangers and depart four days later as dear friends. Friends that share a common desire to view, photograph and learn about the grizzly bear and respect their precious and beautiful environment.

Returning home I knew I had to make some changes. To slow it down…for heaven’s sake, after all, I’m retired! That meant letting go of some things, completing other things to finality, focusing on what’s really important (Faith-Family-Farm) and allow myself to breathe. It takes a get-away to wake up and figure things out. And it has taken until around now…5 months since Khutzeymateen…to write these thoughts and share them in my blog.

Love of Livelihood

I’m back in class again. Blogging 101 is underway. I have tried to get going with this course offered by WordPress more than once but this time I have no excuses. Assignment #1…Say Hello to The World. Well, since I’ve been writing this blog for a little over a year now…albeit, sporadically….I’ll just reintroduce my self and why I’m blogging.

0268header

My husband and I operate a 300 head cow/calf operation in Alberta, Canada. Up until a year ago we both held off-farm jobs and still ran the ranch. After this past year, I still shake my head in wonderment as to how we did it. How did we care for all these critters as well as ourselves and children and the jobs that kept us constantly driving away from the ranch?

It is time now to enjoy our livelihood. We now can stay home together and care for these animals that mean so much to us. Thus the reason for this blog. I’ve always liked to journal life events and I am passionate about taking pictures to support those stories….sounds like the kind of stuff that makes a blog perhaps?

The simplicity and pure pleasure of rural life is what my blog Flicka Rancher is all about. The female perspective behind the life we live out here on the ranch.

 

What Is Boredom?

According to the Wikipedia definition, it “is an emotional state experienced when an individual is left without anything in particular to do, and not interested in their surroundings.”

I can honestly declare that I have not experienced this emotional state ever since I became a rancher’s wife [also know as “unpaid farmhand”] sixteen years ago. And my surroundings? How could I not be interested…what with the husband….the dogs, the cats, the horses, the chores, the weather and of course….the cattle. The cattle are our life and our purpose…the reason we do what we do, day in and day out. My husband has always said “the cows come first”. That used to bother me a wee bit but now I’m “all in” on that reality and it has helped us become a much more cohesive decision-making unit.
8938

Dad Would Have Been 87 Today

IMG_5540

 

I am reminded today why it is so important that I keep a blog and that I have kept a blog in the past. Today would have been our dad’s 87th birthday. It is the first time a February 9 has come that dad has not been with us. He passed away last summer and we all still ache over our great loss. Two years ago we had a grand family celebration of his 85th birthday and between my youngest brother’s pictures and my blog story of the day, we have a comforting memory intact. Mom shared with me today how heartwarming it was to review again. Thus….why it is so important to journal and capture life’s events. Blogging is that avenue for me.

Miss you so much dad.